Five Surefire Ways to Lose Social Media Followers

Five Surefire Ways to Lose Social Media Followers

Social Media Pet Peeves that will lose you Social Media Followers

photo credit: Stewart Black via photopin cc

Social Media Followers are important for growing a brand. When people follow you, or subscribe to what you're sharing, they're putting their trust in you to provide interesting content that satisfies a need for them. Sure, there are people who follow just to follow, but others are more discerning as they value their time.

I have been playing on the various social media networks for many years now and I have developed my own set of pet peeves – these are things that drive me up the wall and will cause me to unlike, unfollow, uncircle you without a second thought. Sure, you might offer some occasionally interesting insights, but my time is valuable and social media is about being social and sharing. I want to be able to have a conversation with you. I want to learn something. I most certainly don't want to feel like just a number.

With that in mind, here are my five pet peeves that are annoying to me and suggestions on how to fix them (hint: don't do 'em!). If they bother me, they probably bother others and will most likely cause you to lose social media followers.

  1. Autoresponses – This is my number one pet peeve. Congratulations on amassing 20,000 followers. Serious hat tip. But when I follow you, do not send me a generic “Hi, thanks for the follow. Please visit www.mywebsite.com to learn more about me” or some other canned autoresponse. Take 30 seconds and send me a quick, “Hi Jarrod! I really appreciate the follow. How are things in California?” or some other non-canned response that shows me that you actually care to get to know me because you looked at my profile. If I get a response that is automated, sorry, I won't be a follower for long.
  2. Hashtag Abusers – #OMG #THATISSOAWESOME #ICREATED #AHASHTAG #NOONECARESABOUT. People who create hashtags just for the sake of creating hashtags bother me. Also, people who cram 15 hashtags in their bio or tweet nothing but hashtags are annoying. Really? That's really awesome that you're an #SMM #MKTG #CustServ #GraphicDesign #SocialMedia #Marketing #Business #Content #FollowBack person. No really, have a cookie. Please, please, please limit the hashtags on your bio to no more than three and use only one or two in your tweets. And please, make sure they're relevant. I really hate searching for #BB15 tweets and I get links to your online casino or some other non-related site. Too many hashtags will lead me to question you as an authority and may cause me to unfollow you.
  3. Quotes, Quotes, and More Quotes – Who doesn't like a good #QOTD (Quote of the Day for you hashtag abusers)? My problem is that when I look at your feed, you're sharing nothing but quotes… from other people. You don't have anything profound or interesting of your own to say? That's sad. You're not even sharing content that matters to me. I'll stick with you for a while, but if this is all you're sharing, if I want to be inspired, I'll just do a search and will unfollow you.
  4. Too Many Off-Topic Posts/Tweets/Updates – If I'm following you, it's because you supposedly share content that's relevant to my interests or my niche. But if five out of every ten posts you do are about Grumpy Cat, and I followed you because of your marketing background (Not to mention your bio contained #MKTG, #SMM, #SocialMedia, #Marketing, #CustServ, #Business hashtags), I would expect the majority of your posts to be marketing related. Don't get me wrong, I love me some Grumpy Cat, but I would expect to see more posts about marketing and social media. I mean, your bio says so.
  5. You Never Respond to Tweets/Comments – You call yourself a social media pro, but never respond to questions that are posed to you. Social media is meant to be social. If you pose a question to your followers, and someone answers, why not answer them back? “Thanks for responding – that's an interesting perspective.” or “Why do you feel that way about XYZ…” You get the idea. And make sure it isn't a canned autoresponse. Sadly, it seems that I can count on one hand the number of times I've answered a question posed by a supposed “engager” or “pro” and have gotten a response. The vast majority of the time, I get nothing. When I look at their feed, it seems they don't answer other people either. What's the point of asking a question if you're not going to engage? I understand that you're busy, and the question was probably an autopost (not necessarily the same as an autoresponse), but make some time to interact with the masses. Failure to do so may cost you social media followers.

Those are my five pet peeves that I believe to be surefire ways to lose social media followers. And note that while I may say “unfollow” or “unsubscribe”, the terms are interchangeable regardless of the network. In my mind, they mean the same thing. And followers are the same as fans. You do any of the things listed above, you're alienating your users and taking them for granted.

So what say you? Do you have any social media no-no's or pet peeves? Do share below in the comments!

Disclosure of Material Connection

Some of the links in the post above may be affiliate links. This means if you click on a link and make a purchase, I will receive a modest commission from the sale. These links help support the maintenance of this website.


Please be advised that I only recommend products or services that I have used or tried personally and believe will add value to my readers' lives. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”